HorseRacing Central – May 17th, 2013
HOLIDAY MONDAY CARD TOPS 3 DAYS OF WEEKEND RACING
Hastings Racecourse hosts its first holiday racing card of the 2013 thoroughbred season as British Columbians celebrate Victoria Day on Monday, May 20.
Two $50,000 stakes co-feature the Victoria Day eight-race card: the John Longden 6000 for 3-year-olds & up and the Strawberry Morn for fillies & mares, 3-years-old & up. Monday’s races begin at 1:50 p.m., the same start time for the seven-race cards at Hastings on Saturday and Sunday.
Saturday is Preakness Day when Kentucky Derby winner Orb pursues the second jewel of racing’s Triple Crown from Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore. Hastings will show the 138th running of the Preakness via simulcast at 3:20 p.m.
NEW RACING SECRETARY DUE TO ARRIVE NEXT WEEK
Stuart Slagle joins the Hastings Racecourse management team as Racing Secretary and is expected to be at his new post in the Racing Office on Wednesday, May 29. Raj Mutti, Regional General Manager, BC Racing and General Manager of Hastings Raceourse, made the announcement earlier this week.
“Stuart brings to Hastings extensive experience within the racing industry,” Mutti said. “He has worked at a number of race tracks all over the United States including The Downs at Albuquerque, Manor Downs (Texas), Arapahoe Park (Colorado), Zia Park and Ruidoso (New Mexico) and most recently Pimlico Race Course.”
Mutti also announced the promotion of Matt Jukich to the position of Assistant Racing Secretary. Matt, son of the ‘Voice of the Races’ Dan, will continue his previous duties as Racing Analyst at Hastings while working with Slagle.
FRIDAY NIGHT LIVE RACING BEGINS JUNE 7
The first of 11 Friday Night Live cards will be on June 7, leading into the ‘Spring Showcase’ weekend at Hastings that culminates on Sunday, June 9 with four major stake races each offering $50,000 in purses: the Sir Winston Churchill, River Rock Casino, Emerald Downs and Vancouver Sun.
HASTINGS’ DEMOGRAPHIC: FROM ONE MONTH TO 99 YEARS
Jewel Kositsky, Regional Manager, HPI and Guest Services at Hastings, went from greeting a one-month-old newborn to a charming lady approaching her 100th birthday during last Sunday’s Mother’s Day racing card.
“I didn’t get the baby’s name,” Kositsky says. “He was this cute little bundle smiling up at me from a stroller with his Dad proudly standing by. Then I went upstairs to Silks to say hello to Nan Hall, who celebrates her 100th birthday on November 19. She’s been a regular on Mother’s Day for many years. I’m not sure there are too many other sports entities that share such a wide range in ages.”
NOTES AT THE WIRE
With 10 days or racing in the record books at Hastings there have been four stake races and jockey Aaron Gryder has gone two-for-four with wins in the Brighouse Belles (Evelyn’s Dancer) and Ross McLeod (I Think So). Frank Fuentes rode Shrug to victory in the George Royal while Fernando Perez was on Proud Victor in the Jim Coleman Province … Gryder is the leading rider with 14 wins in 45 starts while Troy Taylor tops the trainer standings with 10 wins in 28 starts … It didn’t take long for new Hastings horse owner Chad Joe to experience the thrill of victory when his 3-year-old filly Miss Derek won the 4th race on Sunday’s Mother’s Day card by drawing clear in the stretch drive and beating I Dig That by three lengths with Fernando Perez in the irons. Joe and his wife Christa were in the winner’s circle with several family members while friends from the Sunshine Coast were texting congratulatory messages from Gilligan’s Pub in Sechelt, where they had gathered to watch the race at the BC Racebook outlook … Sunday at Hastings a lucky finalist out of a field of 22 key holders will win a 2013 Dueck GM ATS Cadillac following a Hastings Racecourse and Casino promotion that began in April.